Health workers in the diaspora are important – Dr. Malama

Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary for Administration Dr. Kennedy Malama has said the Zambian Government acknowledges the importance that could be derived from engaging with Health workers in the diaspora as partners in development.

And Dr. Malama has said the National Health Insurance is the new future of healthcare for Zambia and Africa at large.

Dr. Malama is in the UK attending the annual Africa Healthcare summit held at the Olympia. This business event provides high-level discussion and meetings into the investment opportunities and technology procurement requirements of Africa’s healthcare industry.

Dr. Malama said in an interview after he paid a courtesy call on Zambia’s High Commissioner to the United His Excellency Mr. Muyeba Chikonde at Zambia House that Zambian Health workers in the diaspora can bring leverage to Zambia.

“As government we see Zambian Health personnel in the diaspora as huge potential, we acknowledge what they are doing. We are opening all the avenues and we would like to engage them, they can bring a lot of leverage to our beautiful country,” he said.

He said the Zambian Government recognise the importance of developing and cultivating a solid and positive relationship with its medical workers abroad and encouraged them to continue flying the Zambian flag high.

Dr. Malama said the Ministry of Health was overwhelmed with the work that Zambian nurses in the UK were doing and commended Rachel Mwansa, the Head of Nursing for Liver and Renal Care at King’s College Hospital in London, who is also the president of the Association of Zambian Nurses UK (AZNUK), for supporting palliative healthcare and Renal services at Ndola Central Hospital.

He said there was need to engage and strengthen co-ordination between the Ministry of Health and health workers in the diaspora.

And Dr. Malama said National Health Insurance will ensure that all Zambians are provided with essential healthcare.

“Zambia is at an exciting stage, our National Health Insurance bill is in parliament, it passed the first reading, passed the second reading and it will be going for the third reading, and we are on firm ground. Countries like Nigeria, Ghana and Rwanda are supporting the National Health Insurance too so we are confident about it,” he said.

Dr. Malama said the Ministry of Health has seen an increase in the budgetary allocation adding that once government brings in the National Health Insurance, coupled with good political will, Zambia’s health sector will never be the same.

He said investing in the health sector of a country is important as it not only delivers better health and improve the lives of people, it also strengthen economies, create jobs, and improves personal productivity.

The Permanent Secretary said Zambia has stopped looking at the health sector from a consumption or a social side but is looking at it from an economic side and therefore investment in the health sector is significant.

Dr. Malama said Zambia boasts of political stability, peace and tranquility, a relatively stable economic outlook and invited investors to come and invest in Zambia’s Health Sector.

He said government wants to ensure that by 2021 it recruits 30,000 Health workers through the Private, Public Partnerships adding that there is room for partnership in all areas in the Health sector.

Issued by: Abigail Chaponda (Mrs.) First Secretary | Press and Public Relations, Zambia High Commission in the United Kingdom.

LONDON, Friday, 9th March, 2018

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